ACCEPTABLE USE POLICY FOR STAFF AND STUDENTS
The Smithfield Public School District has recognized eight principles of being a Responsible Digital Citizen.
- Respect Yourself. I will show respect for myself through my actions. I will select online names that are appropriate. I will consider the information and images that I post online. I will not post inappropriate personal information about my life, experiences, experimentation or relationships. I will not be obscene.
- Protect Yourself. I will ensure that the information I post online will not put me at risk. I will not publish my personal details, contact details, or a schedule of my activities. I will report any attacks or inappropriate behavior directed at me. I will protect passwords, accounts, and resources.
- Respect Others. I will show respect to others. I will not use electronic mediums to defame, bully, harass, or stalk other people. I will show respect for other people in my choice of websites. I will not visit sites that are degrading, pornographic, racist, or inappropriate. I will not abuse my rights of access, and I will not enter other people’s spaces or areas.
- Protect Others. I will protect others by reporting abuse, not forwarding inappropriate materials or communications, and not visiting sites that are degrading, pornographic, racist or inappropriate.
- Respect School Property. I will take care of any school equipment or tools that I use. I will let a teacher know if any equipment is not working properly or needs to be repaired.
- Don’t Steal. I will not steal content, media, or information. I will only use properly purchased and licensed content, media, and software. I will properly purchase my music and other media, and refrain from distributing these.
- Honor Intellectual Property. I will request permission to use resources and suitably cite any and all use of websites, books, media, etc.
- Respect SPSD Safeguards. I will respect and honor the safeguards put in place by the SPSD to protect the safety of the school community by not bypassing internet filters, utilizing key loggers, etc.
I have read, understand, and agree to abide by the provisions stated above.
Smithfield Public Schools Acceptable Use Policy For Staff and Students
All users of the Smithfield Public School District (SPSD) computer systems, either students or employees (including onsite contractors and parent volunteers), are subject to this Acceptable Use Policy. This policy will undergo periodic review to ensure SPSD hardware, software, and data systems are used in a responsible, efficient, ethica1, and legal manner and such use must be in support of the SPSD's business and education objectives.
Teachers, administrators, and other school personnel should ensure SPSD hardware, software, and data systems are used in a responsible, efficient, ethical, and legal manner, and such use must be in support of the SPSD's business and education objectives.
Philosophy of Use
Access to computers, computing equipment, e-mail and the Internet enables students and staff to explore thousands of libraries, databases, and Websites while communicating with Internet users throughout the world. The SPSD provides students and staff with computing and Internet access to further educational goals and objectives. However, students and staff may find ways to access materials that are illegal, defamatory, inaccurate, or potentially offensive to some people. The SPSD believes the benefits of access to the Internet in the form of information resources and opportunities for collaboration exceed any disadvantages.
Student and Staff Rights and Responsibilities for Using the SPSD's Computer Hardware and Network
The SPSD provides a computer network for students and staff who agree to act in a considerate and responsible manner. The network is available to conduct research, save student and staff work/files, and communicate with others.
The SPSD's Acceptable Use Policy is to prevent unauthorized access and other unlawful activities by users online, prevent unauthorized disclosure of or access to sensitive information, and to comply with the Children's Internet Protection Act ("CIPA"). As used in this policy, the term "user" includes anyone using the computers, Internet, email, social media, chat rooms and other forms of direct electronic communications or equipment provided by the SPSD (the "network."). Only current students or employees are authorized to use the network.
Access is a privilege, not a right, and therefore entails responsibility. Students and staff are responsible for good behavior on the school's computer network. If a user is uncertain about whether a particular use is acceptable or appropriate, he or she should consult a supervisor or other appropriate SPSD personnel. All users will comply with all SPSD regulations and will honor signed agreements.
Students/parents and staff members shall be required to sign the SPSD Acceptable Use Policy annually before Internet or electronic communicating accounts shall be accessed and be allowed.
Home and Personal Internet Use
Students' and staff home and personal Internet use can have an impact on the school and on other students and staff members. If a student's or staff member's personal Internet expression - such as a threatening message to another student or staff member or a violent Web site - creates a likelihood of material disruption of the school's operations, the student or staff member may face school discipline and criminal penalties.
During the instructional day, teachers must make reasonable efforts to supervise student use of the SPSD's computer system and electronic devices in a manner that is appropriate to the student’s age and circumstances of use.
Student and Staff ID's and Passwords
The SPSD provides all students and staff with a unique network ID and password for that student's or staff member’s use only. All staff members will receive an email account. Students and staff members shall not share their passwords with anyone else, nor shall students or staff members use anyone else’s password, regardless of how the password is obtained. Students or staff members who suspect that someone has discovered their password should contact the administrator at their school immediately. Students or staff members shall not intentionally seek information on, obtain copies of, or modify files, other data, or passwords belonging to other users.
Protection of Identifying Information
Students or staff members should not reveal on the Internet personal information about themselves or other persons. Identifying information includes, but is not limited to, last names, addresses, telephone numbers, family information, or any other personal information that could be used inappropriately.
Email as a Record
The SPSD's information technology systems store and record information transmitted via email and this record cannot be deleted by the user. The SPSD may conduct monitoring of messages.
Transmissions are SPSD property and should not be considered confidential or private. By using the SPSD information technology systems, the employee is expressly consenting to such monitoring. Please refer to Local RI General State Law 38-2-2(4) and RI General Law 38-1-l(c).
The SPSD Computer Network is routinely monitored to maintain the efficiency of the system. Users should be aware that use of the network is subject to reasonable and appropriate monitoring by the SPSD Technology Department that abides by the requirements of all applicable federal and state laws. Any activities related to or in support of violations of this policy and/or other SPSD policies and rules may be reported and will subject the user to appropriate sanctions.
Users acknowledge that since the SPSD computer network is routinely monitored, that any email or other communications or transmission may be viewed at any time by the Administration. By utilizing the SPSD network, the user specifically acknowledges that he or she has no privacy expectation in any communications sent utilizing the network or its services.
In compliance with the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA), the SPSD has installed filtering and/or blocking software to restrict access to Internet sites containing material harmful to minors, such as sexually explicit or other inappropriate materials. The software works by scanning for objectionable words or concepts as determined by the school SPSD.
However, no internet filter is foolproof. A user who incidentally connects to an inappropriate site must immediately disconnect from the site and notify a teacher or supervisor. If a user sees another user accessing inappropriate sites, he or she should notify a teacher or supervisor immediately.
Students shall not use the school SPSD's network system to access material that is obscene, pornographic, sexually explicit, sexually suggestive, harmful, or otherwise inappropriate. Students or staff members shall not tamper with nor attempt to disable the filtering service.
Using Proxy Sites To By-Pass SPSD Filters
Any use of a proxy site on the SPSD's system to bypass the established filtering service will result in disciplinary action.
The following restrictions against inappropriate speech and messages apply to all speech communicated and accessed through the SPSD's network including, but not limited to, e-mail, social media, instant messages, web pages, and web logs (blogs, Wiki's, etc.).
Students and staff shall not send obscene, profane, lewd, vulgar, rude, inflammatory, threatening, or disrespectful messages. Students and staff shall not post information that could cause damage, danger, or disruption, or engage in personal attacks, including prejudicial or discriminatory attacks. Students and staff shall not harass another person, or knowingly or recklessly post false or defamatory information about a person or organization.
Access to Restricted Information
Student and staff use of school SPSD computer equipment and network is limited to the educational purposes of the SPSD. Improper uses include, but are not limited to, gaining illegal access to school SPSD records, files, computer programs, student records, and other information maintained by the SPSD.
Physical Computer Damage and Theft
Students or staff shall not willfully damage SPSD hardware/peripherals (or outside computing devices used by the SPSD), or computer networks or interfere with another’s ability to use a computing system or network. Students or staff shall not bypass or disable SPSD maintained network security systems. Students or staff shall not intentionally remove SPSD hardware or peripherals from its assigned SPSD property without approval of the Director of Technology.
Use of Non-SPSD Software and Applications
Students or staff shall not install any non-SPSD approved application software on the SPSD network or school workstations.
Students may NOT download inappropriate files/programs onto SPSD network resources, SPSD accounts or onto SPSD devices. Inappropriate files include, but are not limited to, games, music, video or audio files, or material restricted by the SPSD's filtering or blocking software.
The SPSD does not tolerate bullying and harassment. (As referred to Student Policy #3040).
Students shall not use any Internet or other communication device, such as cell or telephone to intimidate, bully, harass, or embarrass other students or staff members. Students who engage in such activity on school grounds or who engage in such activity off campus and create material disruption of school operations shall be subject to the penalties outlined in this document as well as possible criminal prosecution.
Students and staff members will request permission, when appropriate, to use resources and suitably cite any and all use of websites, books, media etc. Students and staff members will not steal content, media or information. Students and staff members will only use properly purchased and licensed content, media and software. Students and staff members will properly purchase any music and other media, and refrain from distributing these.
For more information about copyright, please see http://www.copyright.gov
SPSD Access to Student/Staff Files and Emails
Students and staff members should have no expectation of privacy or confidentiality in the content of electronic communications or other computer files that they send or receive on the SPSD computer network or store in SPSD directories.
The Director Technology or other designated SPSD employee may, at any time, review the subject, content, and appropriateness of electronic communications or other computer files and may remove them, if warranted.
Personal Mobile Technology
Students and staff may bring tablets, e-readers, and other communication devices to school as long as they do not disrupt the educational process. Individual schools and teachers may impose additional restrictions consistent with this policy. The SPSD is not responsible for the loss, theft, damage, or vandalism to student or staff electronic devices.
Policy on Sexting
It is an explicit part of this policy that a student or staff member may not possess, view, send, or share pictures or text having sexual content while the student or staff member is on school grounds, at school sponsored events or on school buses or other vehicles provided by the SPSD. This policy strictly prohibits sexual material in electronic or any other form and includes but is not limited to the sexual material contained in a cellular telephone, camera phone, tablet computer or e-reader and sexual material transmitted by text message, e-mail, or any electronic communication device. A student or staff member who violates this policy is subject to disciplinary action as well as possible criminal prosecution.
School personnel are required to report to law enforcement or child protective services whenever there is reason to believe that any student or other person is involved with child exploitation or child pornography. Students and parents need to be aware of the consequences - some of them life-altering - of having sexual material at school, including on your cell phone or other electronic communication device.
Using the SPSD's Network for Personal Reasons
Students and staff are prohibited from using the SPSD's network to access the Internet for personal advertising, promotion, or financial gain: or conducting for-profit business activities and/or engaging in non-school related fundraising or public relations activities such as solicitation for religious purposes or lobbying for personal political purposes.
Penalties for Improper Use- Staff, Onsite Contractors and Parent Volunteers
The use of a SPSD account is a privilege, not a right, and misuse will result in the restriction or cancellation of the user's account. Failure to abide by this policy may subject a user to corrective action ranging from suspension or permanent revocation of Network access privileges to termination of employment. Violations of certain provisions in this policy may subject a Member to possible civil and criminal liability according to applicable federal and state laws.
When inappropriate use is determined by a user's supervisor, the supervisor will notify, in writing, the Director of Technology for the Smithfield Public Schools, who is authorized to terminate the user's access privileges. If a user's access to the SPSD Network is suspended as a result of violations of this policy, the member may appeal the suspension to the Superintendent. A violator must understand that if he or she is removed from the SPSD Network, there shall be no obligation to provide a subsequent opportunity to access the SPSD network.
Employees of the SPSD who utilize the SPSD network in violation of this policy may be subject to appropriate disciplinary action which may include suspension as well as termination of employment with the District.
Penalties for Improper Use - Students
The use of a SPSD account is a privilege, not a right, and misuse will result in the restriction or cancellation of the user's account. Misuse may also lead to disciplinary and/or legal action for students, including suspension, expulsion, or criminal prosecution by government authorities. The SPSD will attempt to tailor any disciplinary action to the specific issues related to each violation.
If a student's access to the SPSD Network is suspended by SPSD Network administrators as a result of violations of this policy, the student member may appeal the suspension to the building Principal or the Superintendent. A violator must understand that if he or she is removed from the SPSD Network, there shall be no obligation to provide a subsequent opportunity to access the SPSD network.
Students are expected to review this Acceptable Use Policy before using school computers or the SPSD network. Violations may result in:
- Immediate removal from the computer network at any time without warning.
- Removal from the computer network for a specified period of time as determined by the Principal.
- Removal from the computer network for a specified period of time as determined jointly by the principal in consultation with the Director of Technology and the other SPSD staff, if the violation significantly threatens or damages SPSD wide network resources, i.e., Web site, e-mail system, online grading system, etc.
- Removal from the computer network for the duration of a student's enrollment in the SPSD as determined by Superintendent.
- Students who engage in unauthorized computer or network use may be subject to imprisonment, fines, and civil liability under applicable state and federal laws. Unauthorized computer or network use may also result in disciplinary measures consistent with the school SPSD's policies and regulations, including suspension and expulsion.
The SPSD makes no guarantees about the quality of the services provided and is not responsible for any claims, losses, damages, costs, or other obligations arising from use of the SPSD network or accounts. Any additional charges a user accrues due to the use of the SPSD's network are to be borne by the user. The SPSD also denies any responsibility for the accuracy or quality of the information obtained through user access. Any statement, accessible on the computer network or the Internet, is understood to be the author’s individual point of view and not that of the SPSD, its affiliates, or employees.
In consideration of the School Department's providing the use of information technology, the user agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Smithfield School Department regarding any claims, costs, and/or damages incurred by the student or staff member resulting from the use of technology in violation of School Department policy.
The SPSD disclaims any liability for damages incurred resulting from the use of the technology by an employee or student.
I have read, understand, and agree to abide by the provisions of the Acceptable Use Policy of the Smithfield Public School District
Parent/Legal Guardian Name: ____________________________________________________
Parent/Legal Guardian Signature: __________________________________________________
Please return this form to the school where it will be kept on file. It is required for all students and staff that will be using SPSD computer network and/or Internet access.
(TO BE PLACED ON THE DISTRICT WEBSITE)
UNACCEPTABLE USES OF THE COMPUTER NETWORK OR INTERNET
These are examples of inappropriate activity on school department computer network:
- Violating any state or federal law or municipal ordinance, such as: Accessing or transmitting pornography of any kind, obscene depictions, and harmful materials, materials that encourage others to violate the law, confidential information or copyrighted materials.
- Criminal activities that can be punished under law.
- Selling or purchasing illegal items or substances.
- Obtaining and/or using anonymous email sites; spamming; sexting; spreading viruses.
- Causing harm to others or damage to their property.
- Using profane, abusive, or impolite language; threatening, harassing, or making damaging or false statements about others or accessing, transmitting, or downloading offensive, harassing, or disparaging materials.
- Deleting, copying, modifying, or forging other users' names, emails, files, or data; disguising one's identity, impersonating other users, or sending anonymous email.
- Damaging computer equipment, files, data or the network in any way, including intentionally accessing, transmitting or downloading computer viruses or other harmful files or programs, or disrupting any computer system performance.
- Using any SPSD computer to pursue "hacking," internal or external to the SPSD, or attempting to access information protected by privacy laws;
- Engaging in uses that jeopardize access or lead to unauthorized access into others' accounts or other computer networks;
a) Using another's account password(s) or identifier(s);
b) Interfering with other users' ability to access their account(s); or
c) Disclosing anyone's password to others or allowing them to use another's account(s).
- Using the network or Internet for commercial purposes or financial or personal gain.
The Smithfield Public School District (SPSD) reserves the right to take immediate action against violators regarding such activities that:
1) create security and/or safety issues for the SPSD, students, employees, schools, network or computer resources.
2) expend SPSD resources to remedy violations
3) other activities as determined by SPSD as inappropriate.
ADOPTED: May 20, 2013